In the wake of FBI Director James Comey's announcement that former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton would not face criminal prosecution for her use of a private email server and despite finding she mishandled classified information, Republicans on Capitol Hill are putting pressure on the agency to open up about its investigation.
U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, has perhaps some of the greatest influence over just how transparent the FBI should be. And in a statement issued Tuesday afternoon, the senator made it clear that he expects absolute transparency from the bureau.
"While Director Comey made it clear that Secretary Clinton and her staff were 'extremely careless' in handling classified information, he also recommended no criminal prosecution even though 'gross negligence' regarding classified information is a crime," he said. "If it wants to avoid giving the impression that the FBI was pulling punches—because many people in a similar situation would face some sort of consequence—the agency must now be more transparent than ever in releasing information gathered during its investigation.
Grassley, using Comey's own words, said "extraordinary transparency" means more than "simply giving the public a brief summary of his view of the facts." The senator said it should include making available all of the actual evidence in order to allow the public to make an "educated decision on its own about the judgment and decision-making of all the senior officials involved."
"There are plenty of FOIA and congressional requests pending that have been on hold because of the ongoing nature of the investigation," he said. "So now the FBI should respond fully and completely to all of them."